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IOC sanctions two leading sports officials over cash payments

December 9, 2011 -- Updated 0938 GMT (1738 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Two leading sports officials sanctioned by IOC over cash payments
  • CAF president Cameroon's Issa Hayatou reprimanded
  • IAAF president Lamine Diack receives a warning
  • Both will remain IOC members despite the punishments

(CNN) -- Two leading world sports officials were sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee Thursday over cash payments they received from a collapsed sports marketing agency.

The IOC executive board meeting in Lausanne handed down a warning to IAAF president Lamine Diack of Senegal, while Cameroon's Issa Hayatou, who heads the African football conferederation (CAF), was reprimanded.

But both will remain as IOC members.

The board was acting on recommendations made by the IOC Ethics Commission, who launched an investigation into corruption after a BBC television documentary which accused both men of taking money from International Sports and Leisure (ISL).

The agency, which was declared bankrupt with debts of around $300,000 in 2001, had among its clients FIFA and the IAAF, which runs world athletics .

The documentary also placed former FIFA President Joao Havelange under the microscope.

The 95-year-old Brazilian resigned as an IOC member earlier this week and the case against him was closed.

The IOC has proved that we have a high respect for ethical behavior
Jacques Rogge

IOC President Jacques Rogge told a media conference Thursday that the fact Diack and Hayatou were not IOC members at the time they had taken money was a "mitigating circumstance."

He added: "The IOC has proved that we have a high respect for ethical behavior." He refused to comment on Havelange's resignation.

Havelange resigns from IOC

The details of the findings in the cases against Hayatou and Diack were published on the IOC official website Thursday.

Hayatou admitted in his evidence that he had received 100,000 French francs from ISL in 1995, but claimed that it was used to celebrate the 40th anniversary of CAF, which he has headed since 1987.

He produced minutes of a meeting in 1998 and a note from the CAF Finance Director from March 2011 to back his claims, but the IOC cast doubt on his explanation.

"It (the Ethics Commission) noted that the documents produced by the person concerned, drawn up a long time after receipt of the funds, do not guarantee that the payments were indeed made into the CAF accounts," read their ruling.

"It considers that personally accepting a sum of money in these conditions constitutes a conflict of interests."

Diack confirmed that in 1993 he had received three cash payments totaling $30,000 and 30,000 French francs from ISL executive Jean-Marie Weber.

He said Weber had given him the money because he felt sorry for him after his house was burnt down "for political reasons" in March 1993.

He denied any connection between the marketing contract that ISL and the IAAF, of which he was then a vice-president, signed in June that year.

The Ethics Commission took into account his personal circumstances at the time, but added:

"It notes that by accepting a cash donation in these conditions from a marketing partner of the International Federation of which he was vice-president, Mr Lamine Diack placed himself in a conflict of interests situation."

Hayatou's reprimand is a more serious sanction, but Rogge confirmed both men will be able to continue all their duties as IOC members.

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